Monte Pisano is an ancient mountain range situated in the North-Western corner of Tuscany, setting the Pisan valley apart from that of Lucca, 20 km from the coast. Its landscape has been shaped by the cultivation of olive trees: it presents the classic terraced structure, held up by dry-stone walls. Its environment is rich in natural springs and calcareous caves, dotted with precious ancient villages, medieval citadels and Romanesque parish churches.
As you climb higher up, past the olive groves, you’ll find yourself surrounded by pine, oak and chestnut woods. From its very top, Monte Pisano yields priceless views, where the mountain range of the Appennines is juxtaposed with the coast.
In the south, Val Graziosa offers a natural stage that allows the eye to wander down to the coastline and the islands of the Tuscan archipelago. The water from Calci’s and Montemagno’s Zambras – two mountain streams that cut across the valley –was historically employed to power a number of watermills and factories in the area, and still operates the millstones of numerous still-active oil mills.
The ancient Nottolini aqueduct in the North connects the Monte to Lucca, one of the most remarkable towns in Italy given its artistic heritage, while the historical towns of Ripafratta and Corliano mark the outer perimeter of the Apuan Alps. On the other side of the mountains, the 38° thermal waters of San Giuliano have been enticing visitors since the Roman era.
Thanks to its extensive network of clearly marked paths, Monte Pisano provides a perfect location, whether you’re after hiking, horse riding or cycling.
A visit to Monte Pisano also offers a priceless opportunity to meet the local producers and taste the delicacies of its traditional cuisine, such as game, mushrooms, chestnuts, honey and other woodland produces, as well as one of the best olive oils in Italy.